Message from President S. Georgia Nugent About Events in Washington, D.C.

Jan. 7, 2021

Students, faculty and staff,

Yesterday we saw what I believe none of us ever imagined would happen in our country: a violent attack by an insurrectionist mob on our nation’s Capitol and democratic process. It was a sad and shocking day, because of the intent to nullify the will of the people by threatening public servants registering the votes of the American electorate. 

But there is another way in which what we saw was jolting. I was meeting with a group of colleagues when we learned of the attack. The first thought voiced by some was shock that there was so little security protection at the Capitol building, since speculation about protests that might turn violent had been widespread and broadly publicized. 

It may be a long time before the events of yesterday are sorted out and fully understood. But there is a fact that stands clear: In response to last summer’s Black Lives Matter protests in D.C., the National Guard and law enforcement were actively deployed against demonstrators. Yesterday, as rioters with weapons marched directly into the halls of Congress, security measures were lax. The contrast is stark. Our sense of justice compels us to recognize the disparity. And to work for change.

As an institution of higher learning, let us engage and support each other in a shared commitment to the ideals on which our nation was founded, but which remain an aspiration not yet achieved. May we seek together that “more perfect union” of which our Constitution speaks, in full appreciation of our common humanity, our diverse experiences, and the good we can bring about together.

 

President Nugent